REPLY: have on brain health. This work will be important in guiding the development of effective countermeasures protecting brain func- e thank Drs Bevelacqua, Welsh, and Mortazavi for their tion in support of future human spaceflight. Winterest in our article, “Prolonged Microgravity Affects Human Brain Structure and Function.” We disagree, however, D.R. Roberts that we have ignored the multiple unique features of the space- D. Asemani flight environment to which astronauts are exposed and that “this Department of Radiology and Radiological Science P.J. Nietert omission has possibly affected the validity of the findings.” Department of Public Health As we stated in the article, many factors affect individual astro- M.A. Eckert naut performance. These factors include psychological stress, Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery D.C. Inglesby gravitational changes, and radiation exposure as highlighted in the Department of Radiology and Radiological Science letter of Drs Bevelacqua, Welsh, and Mortazavi. Other unique Medical University of South Carolina characteristics of the spaceflight environment include elevated car- Charleston, South Carolina J.J. Bloomberg bon dioxide levels, cephalad fluid shifts, and unique microbial hab- Neurosciences Laboratory itats among others. Any of these factors may act individually or in NASA Johnson Space Center synergy to result in the changes in brain structure and cognitive Houston, Texas M.S. George function that we have documented in astronauts after spaceflight. Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Our study highlights the need for further investigations of Medical University of South Carolina human brain adaptation to spaceflight to disentangle the relative Charleston, South Carolina Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center contribution that each factor, including radiation exposure, may Charleston, South Carolina T.R. Brown Department of Radiology and Radiological Science Medical University of South Carolina http://dx.doi.org/10.3174/ajnr.A6400 Charleston, South Carolina E8 Letters Feb 2020 www.ajnr.org
American Journal of Neuroradiology – American Journal of Neuroradiology
Published: Feb 1, 2020
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